Business & Real Estate

Local siblings create pet tracker app inspired by their own dog

Gideon, Ron, Lynn Marks
Courtesy of Gideon Marks
Los Altos natives Lynn and Ron Marks, pictured with their father, Gideon, came up with the concept for an app, DogLog, that records canine caretaking activities during their difficult time coordinating who was tending to their dog, Joy, between alternating schedules.

Siblings Lynn and Ron Marks, Los Altos natives, were having trouble taking care of their family dog. They weren’t negligent pet owners, or particularly busy people, but Joy was sometimes getting fed dinner twice or missing out on her morning walk because they couldn’t keep track of who had done what.

The days of double dinners are over – the entrepreneurial brother and sister came up with a solution: DogLog, a free app that tracks when a pet eats, walks or goes to the bathroom. Multiple users can keep track of the same animal so that roommates, family members and pet sitters are all on the same page.

Lynn graduated from Los Altos High School in 2011 and Ron in 2013. She went on to become a product manager and he works as a developer. The siblings then moved to San Francisco with their father, who is a mentor for startups. They didn’t have to leave home to find all of the help they needed to develop the app. They did, however, walk around the streets of San Francisco asking strangers whether keeping track of their pets was difficult, and what they needed to better care for them.

Shortly after, Lynn set about choosing and designing DogLog’s features, and Ron coded them. Lynn said the process was fun and brought the siblings closer, but it wasn’t without strife.

“When you’re in a professional working environment, you try to make sure you’re professional,” she said. “With your family, you let your words and emotions get to you.”

According to Lynn, DogLog currently has approximately 2,000 monthly users and an average of 10-15 downloads per day. The Markses want to add features such as reminders, analytics and a way to track monthly flea medications.

Joy, the family dog that started it all, has since passed away. The Marks family used DogLog to track the litany of medications she needed toward the end of her life, and now they’re using the app for their new labradoodle puppy.

Lynn credits part of the operation to her childhood in Los Altos.

“Growing up in Los Altos, in the heart of Silicon Valley, affects the minds of the people who grow up there,” she said. “My brother and I wouldn’t have pursued such technical fields if we hadn’t grown up there.”

To download the app, visit the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.

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